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Thread: 10 more influential books

  1. #46
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    I was thinking a bit about mortal's Ovid pick, and why I hesitated to concede The Metamorphoses as one of the most influential texts, and I suppose it is due to its derivative nature. Pre-Christian Rome, along with Alexander, globalized Hellenism, which is what makes me relestless with the *classical* Roman literature. They turned Grecian angst into pedestrian suburban parlor games, and without the tensions of the Greek mythos, there is no Ovid--though I haven't sat down with him for some time and intend to soon. The digital BG is on my wish list btw.

    And luke, I berrated myself this morning for downloading a collection of the entire body of Milton's works for 99 cents. "I don't even read Milton!" I exclaimed, but I guess I thought of the discussions here, and how the last illusions of my middle class status are getting slurped into my kindle library. I am debating The Divine Comedy, but the kindle cannot give you the two page Italian to English translation, so perhaps I will save that for print... (I have gone over the deep end, just like tales from the Dark Side! )
    Last edited by Jozanny; 12-05-2009 at 11:02 PM. Reason: parenthesis

  2. #47
    Bibliophile JBI's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jozanny View Post
    I was thinking a bit about mortal's Ovid pick, and why I hesitated to concede The Metamorphoses as one of the most influential texts, and I suppose it is due to its derivative nature. Pre-Christian Rome, along with Alexander, globalized Hellenism, which is what makes me relestless with the *classical* Roman literature. They turned Grecian angst into pedestrian suburban parlor games, and without the tensions of the Greek mythos, there is no Ovid--though I haven't sat down with him for some time and intend to soon. The digital BG is on my wish list btw.

    And luke, I berrated myself this morning for downloading a collection of the entire body of Milton's works for 99 cents. "I don't even read Milton!" I exclaimed, but I guess I thought of the discussions here, and how the last illusions of my middle class status are getting slurped into my kindle library. I am debating The Divine Comedy, but the kindle cannot give you the two page Italian to English translation, so perhaps I will save that for print... (I have gone over the deep end, just like tales from the Dark Side! )
    You do know you can get these texts for free, right?

  3. #48
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    There are the free downloads, and there are the better prepared editions, but as to Dante, I have an early Harvard translation on HD, but prefer my Mandalbaum translation, which has the original vernacular and notes. I do not think the free kindle version is worth reading, as public domain translations are lower quality. I might as well put a nice hardback edition on my wishlist.

  4. #49
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    A good challenge ...

    1) There is roughly 6B people around 1999-2000; now approaching 7B. Given modern population explosion, what is widely read now definitely has some weight of being influential. 2) But influential also has an aspect of being early, thus being able to influence many other readers AND AUTHORS of later times. 3) Lastly, usually shorter and lighter (i.e. easier to read) books get read most (thus easier to be influential).

    I have made representative and influential book lists of 4, 16 and 36 texts (http//:lawpark.jimdo.com) but has not tried "most influential books".

    What would be on the scale of ~1B? Chinese, Indians, English speakers, Christians, Muslims
    What would be on slightly smaller magnitue? Buddhists, Spanish, Communist
    What would be early? Greeks

    So, roughly, the list probably look something like: (not in order)
    1. Confucius' Analects
    2. Three Hundred Tang Poems
    3. Bhagavadgita
    4. Shakespeare's Hamlet
    5. Bible
    6. Quran
    7. Buddha's Samyutta Nikaya (and its corresponding northern recension)
    8. Cervante's Don Quixote
    9. Marx's Communist Manisfesto
    10. Illiad

    As Chinese myself, it is actually harder to decide what book/books I would consider most influential in the Chinese tradition ...

  5. #50
    A User, but Registered! tonywalt's Avatar
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    my top 8 would be-

    The Bible
    The Koran
    Adam Smith - Wealth of the Nations
    Plato - Republic
    Aristotle - Nicomachean Ethics
    Newton - Principia
    Darwin - Origin
    Benjamin Graham - Security Analysis
    Last edited by tonywalt; 08-05-2011 at 08:22 AM.

  6. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by tonywalt View Post
    my top 9 would be-

    The Bible
    The Koran
    Darwin - Orgin
    Adam Smith - Wealth of the Nations
    Plato - Republic
    Aristotle - Nicomachean Ethics
    Newton - Principia
    Darwin - Origin
    Benjamin Graham - Security Analysis
    Did you actually mean Top 8?

  7. #52
    A User, but Registered! tonywalt's Avatar
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    Benjamin Graham's Security Analysis is the book that started off individual investing on a large scale. Well, in my mind's view.

    It's brilliant! Give it a try!

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